Azure Certification guide: AZ-103 / AZ-104

Now the time has come for a guide on how to succeed in the Azure Administrator Associate exam

I managed to succeed this one on Ignite 2019 where the possibility to do exams the whole week free! There was though based on the amount of attendees a limit of one (1) per person.

Skills measured:

  • Manage Azure subscriptions and resources (15-20%)
  • Implement and manage storage (15-20%)
  • Deploy and manage virtual machines (VMs) (15-20%)
  • Configure and manage virtual networks (30-35%)
  • Manage identities (15-20%)

As you might see on the cert page there is a transition now happening and as the content have changed quite a bit there is a good idea to do the AZ-104 instead to be future proof!

Learning resources:

I used some different resources for preparing me, I have already the 70-533 in the bagage so I did have some understanding of the administrator exams..

First of all the Microsoft learn have a learning path that covers a great deal of the required skills.

Secondly I used a book from Packt written by Sjoukje Zaal that was very good and got me even more prepared.

The book goes through the different skills required in a structured way and helps in the learning process.

What you learn from the book:

  • Configure Azure subscription policies and manage resource groups
  • Monitor activity log by using Log Analytics
  • Modify and deploy Azure Resource Manager (ARM) templates
  • Protect your data with Azure Site Recovery
  • Learn how to manage identities in Azure
  • Monitor and troubleshoot virtual network connectivity
  • Manage Azure Active Directory Connect, password sync, and password writeback

Good luck in your preparations and hope you will be as successful as me!

Microsoft Ignite on Tour Stockholm May 5-6

It is time again for Microsoft Ignite on tour in Stockholm and this time it is in May and it will be the last one on the On Tour serie 2019-2020. It will be two packed days with awesome content and learnings! I will of course be there and network and watch sessions..

To register, go to the event site and do it right now, as I have been informed already about 2900 have already done it and the seats may run out!

The different learning paths are :
  • Managing Cloud Operations
  • Azure Fundamentals
  • Journey to Microsoft Teams
  • Securing your organisation
  • Migrating Server Infrastructure
  • Content collaboration, communication, and engagement in the intelligent workplace Learning Path
  • Deploying, managing, and servicing windows, office and all your devices Learning Path
  • Meeting organizational compliance requirements Learning Path
  • Power Platform
  • Microsoft Dynamics 365
  • Modernizing web applications and data Learning Path
  • IT administrator’s guide to managing productivity in the cloud Learning Path
  • Improving reliability through modern operations practices Learning Path
  • Developing cloud native applications Learning Path
  • Develop integrations and workflows for your productivity applications Learning Path

See you there!

Azure Certification guide: AZ-900

Last year I took the exams AZ-900, AZ-103 and AZ-301 and wanted to give you an insight into how I studied and what you need to do to have a successful shot at the exams.

AZ – 900

In this first post I will go through the resources for AZ-900. The exam page on Microsoft Learn takes you to the exam registration and also a detailed list on what you need to know!

Skills measured

  • Understand cloud concepts (15-20%)
  • Understand core Azure services (30-35%)
  • Understand security, privacy, compliance, and trust (25-30%)
  • Understand Azure pricing and support (20-25%)

Resources:

I used two different resources for preparing for the exam. That being said I have been working with Azure for some years so maybe if you are new to the Microsoft cloud you might need to do some more studying!

First I used Openedx but their AZ-900 course have been closed down. Microsoft Partner site have an alternative that you can utilize, it is a virtual course that is recorded. Secondly I used Microsoft Learn that has a learning path that is really good!

Good luck on your Azure adventure!

Azure Hybrid Virtual Event

Me and Julia on last years Microsoft Ignite

On Tuesday the 31 of March Corporate VP of Azure, Julia White will talk about hybrid cloud on a webinar. The time of the event is 8-9 PST or 17-18 CET

Learn on-premises, multicloud, and the edge. And, be among the first to hear about the latest innovations in Azure Arc and Azure Stack—two game-changing hybrid cloud offerings from Microsoft.  

There will be some nice announcements on Azure Stack and Azure Arc so do tune in and watch!

sign up here

MVP Azure 2019-2020

I am thrilled to tell you all that I was once again awarded the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional for 2019-2020.

This time I have moved to the Azure category but still do lot of stuff with the cloud and datacenter management of course, although the main part now is within the Azure/Azure Stack space!

Azure Portal App

There is a new preview of a Azure Portal App that lets you use the Azure Portal without any other browser available, this is a great thing if you have a Windows Server as your main go-to jumpbox that you do things in and as we know it is by default not possible to run Edge browser in Windows Server and you are stuck with Internet Explorer and that alone makes you go bananas and also that browser is some serious legacy thingy.

First you go to https://preview.portal.azure.com/app/Download

once downloaded and installed you can then sign into your azure account to start utilizing the app and manage your cloud resources

As you can see it is like any other browser experience of the Azure portal and you can of course also start an cloud shell.

Of course the option to install chrome or firefox also works as an alternative, although some companies have restrictions on third party software being installed within their server environments…

Windows Admin Center 1903

With the preview of Windows Admin Center 1903 that now is available in the insiders you now have some new extensions that make life even easier than before administering AD, DHCP and DNS.

Once upgraded I go into the portal and there I find the new extensions.

And after installing them I can go to an domain controller and instantly administer user and computer objects

So please replace your old domain controllers and let go of the GUI option when you do it!

happy playing!

Azure Stack HCI

Today Microsoft announced the Azure Stack HCI and the family of Azure, Azure Stack, Azure Stack HCI is complete to take care of your company all different needs.

So Azure Stack HCI is the new name for the Hyper Converged solution that before was called WSSD and hardware companies certify their solutions to be in the list for Azs HCI.

Azure Stack HCI solutions

There is a hybrid event on the 28th that you can sign up and learn more on that online show.

Or listen on the recording from Jeff and Vijay where they describe more about Azure Stack HCI

New challenges in the cloud

The time has come to start a new part of my worklife! I am leaving Basefarm and the Lead Architect role I had there for a new job as a Chief Cloud Architect at Evry.

During my time at Basefarm I have been working intensively with Azure Stack and Azure offerings as well as on-premise solutions. Basefarm was one of the Azure Stack early adopters and the learnings within this journey have been challenging and interesting both based on the appliance and also the organisational adoption.

My key areas as a Chief Cloud Architect will be on public cloud solutions and helping my team at Evry and the customers be successful in the transformation to the public cloud.

I will be focusing on amazing solutions based on Azure and Azure Stack but I will also work on AWS and Google Cloud solutions.

I will have the great pleasure to work with Marius Sandbu that is also a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional.

Bin file left on Hyper-V VM

We have an upgraded Hyper-V cluster from 2012 R2 to 2016 and I wanted to make some more space on the volume that it resides on so I started looking on the settings of the VMs. As I concluded in another blog post there can be a discussion about if we really need the setting of “Save VM state” for the VM´s in a Hyper-V cluster. It is viable to have this setting on VM´s that reside on a standalone host and if doing maintenance it saves the state of the VM during host reboot.

So what is the thing here, well some of the VM´s in this cluster have got their VM version upgraded to 8.0 but some was still on 5.0. If i just check on the SC VMM I could find the VM´s configured with “Save VM” and amount of storage that they consume.

But when checking the storage where the VM reside I noticed that the value above did not match the size. With the following PowerShell I check for the files that have the ending of .bin (2012 r2 and older format) and also .vmrs (that is the 2016+ format)

Apparently some of the VM´s that have been upgraded from 5.0 have their bin file still in the subfolder.

To fix this I did a report of the files and then a delete, as the file is not in use in a 8.0 VM I could do it when it was online

Running the following on your VM´s disable the “SaveVM” and if you then upgrade to VM version 8.0 after that you will not get a duplicate issue 🙂

Happy HyperVing out there